Being a teenager in Coronado means spending afternoons at Central Beach, swimming, surfing, or enjoying the sunshine. But as a result of the recent environmental crisis that is the cross border sewage flow, the first two options aren’t safe anymore. Members of Coronado’s Gen Z community are sharing their opinions on what’s happening to their town and their ocean.
On Friday, September 1, a “Stop the Sewage” protest at the beach resulted in a large crowd. Attendees participated in chants, some led by none other than Coronado High School (CHS) Sophomore Danny Vinegrad. The fourteen year old founded the Stop the Sewage Club at Coronado High School (CHS) this past summer after thinking about how he could get involved with the local movement. Vinegrad started the club to bring bring awareness and support to this issue. As the school year carries on, so will the club and its growing membership.
CHS students can find a Stop the Sewage club table at club rush, which will be held on Thursday, Sept. 14, and Friday, Sept. 15. Additionally, students who have interest in joining can find updates on the club’s Instagram page, @chsstopthesewage.
Club member and junior Sierra Grella says, “I joined Stop the Sewage to help Coronado get clean ocean water again. I know a lot of people who love to go into the ocean, however the beach is always closed. Joining the club, attending rallies, and drawing attention to the issue were just some of the ways I could help.”
Students involved in other environmental clubs, like the CHS Emerald Keepers, spoke out about the sewage crisis as well. Co-president and senior Dylan Berk says, “The sewage spills are a very important issue for residents and visitors in Coronado, but we also need to focus on other environmental issues that impact Coronado such as plastic pollution, air quality, waste generation, water conservation, and climate change. The Emerald Keepers CHS club has many opportunities for students to learn about and participate in activities that address these different environmental issues.”
The high school is full of surfers and lovers of the environment that miss their beach. Senior Chloe Bingham says, “From a student perspective, I think the sewage spills have gotten way out of hand and since it’s coming from a different country it’s harder to deal with because we aren’t in full control of the situation. […] The sewage coming from Tijuana doesn’t only harm the wildlife and the ecosystem and those who actively go in the ocean, it also harms those on land because it’s gotten so bad that’s it’s literally in the air.”
No matter if you are already part of a larger organization and protesting, or simply miss boogie boarding and wish to get back in the ocean, there are ways big and small to advocate and be part of the mission to solve the issue.